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Religious Education

At Trinity all students will gain a foundational understanding of major religious traditions and how their beliefs and practices have shaped and influenced the world we live in today. Particular focus is given to Christianity where we shall explore major theological and philosophical concepts. We shall explore how these beliefs impact an individual’s worldview, behaviour and morality. Through the study of ethics students have the opportunity to explore the key ethical issues which society faces today. Students will be equipped with the tools and knowledge to be able to reach their own judgements upon these ethical issues. In our exploration of Philosophy, we look at foundational arguments for and against the existence of God, how we can understand ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ and epistemology.

To broaden the students’ knowledge of world faiths, we look at Islam and Buddhism independently. This enhances the students’ understanding of a diverse range of cultures and will help students to make sense of the world.

Students will leave Trinity with a deep knowledge of Christianity, Philosophy and Ethics. They will have an appreciation of cultural diversity and will have honed key skills such as: analytical and critical thinking; the ability to work with abstract ideas; and written and research skills.

Key stage three students focus primarily on Christianity. In year 7, we will focus on understanding the broader narratives of the Old and New Testament and the life of Jesus. The emphasis will be placed on improving the ‘biblical literacy’ of all students. This will prepare them for their later KS4 study of Christianity. We conclude the year by focusing on another major Abrahamic tradition, Islam. Connections will be made between the theology of the two religions and students will gain an understanding of the second most popular faith in the UK. Later in the key stage we will investigate the wider topics of: A-Z of Religions, Buddhism, Life after Death and Philosophy of Religion. Throughout the topical units, we will focus predominantly on Christianity. However, the views of World Religions will also be incorporated into the curriculum. This will provide breadth and variety, allowing students to deepen their knowledge of other cultures and systems of belief. 

At Key Stage Four students follow the AQA “Religious Studies (A)” syllabus. The GCSE is divided into two components: Paper 1, The Study of Religions, Beliefs and Practices and Paper 2, Thematic Studies. Each component is assessed by a written exam of 1 hour and 45 minutes at the end of Year 11. Within ‘Paper 1’ students study core beliefs and practices of Christianity and Buddhism. In ‘Paper 2’ students study the following themes: Religion and Life, Religion, Peace and Conflict, Religion and Relationships, and Religion Crime and Punishment. The syllabus explores questions about belief, values, meaning, truth and purpose. It gives students the opportunity to critically analyse contentious ethical issues and to form independent judgements upon religious issues. Students will gain an appreciation of how religion, philosophy and ethics form the basis of our culture. They will hone the key transferable skills of critical thinking, analysis, and research, as well as the ability to work with abstract ideas.

In the Sixth form students who have elected to study A level RE will follow a course divided into two components: Philosophy and Ethics and The Study of Religions and Dialogues. At Trinity, the core religion studied is Christianity, in line with the Christian character of the school. Amongst the variety of topics studied within Philosophy and Ethics, students will explore in-depth the classical philosophical arguments for the existence of God, such as: the Ontological, Cosmological and Teleological arguments. Students will explore the normative ethical theories of Situation Ethics, Virtue Ethics and Natural Moral Law. The Study of Religions and Dialogues comprises of the study of Christianity in relation to some of the following topics: sources of wisdom and authority, beliefs about God, the expression of religious identity, religion gender and sexuality, religion and science, religion and secularisation, religion and religious pluralism.

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